Man About Town: Fake Psy just one bubble in the Cannes champagne

The actual film business is only a small part of Cannes

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The Independent Online

“On my God!” the DJ said in a European accent. “Look at that, a Methusalem!”

The electro music stopped to be replaced by the theme from Superman, as a team of staff made their way through the club carrying bottles of champagne of varying sizes, all with sparklers on the top.

The man next to me, who runs a nightclub in London estimated that with the Methusalem (a six litre bottle and there may have been more than one) of Cristal champagne, this one order would cost the customer at least £100,000.

We were at a party for Belvedere vodka in Gotha nightclub in Cannes, where Europe's wealthiest party animals head to for the film festival. And for them, a big order like this just acts like a challenge to the other rich people nearby and whether they can afford it or not, they want to be seen to be keeping up as well as trying to impress the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and rapper Busta Rhymes who were among the crowd.

Afterwards, I saw that someone on Facebook had posted a bill from the same club, which had reached £325,000. This included 200 bottles of Dom Perignon champagne (at £428 each) enough for one for every table in the club. French President François Hollande's tax on the wealthy might have grabbed the headlines, but it  hasn't stopped the super rich party in Cannes.

As I have written before, the actual film business is only a small part of Cannes, the parties, yachts and nightclubs all trying to attach themselves to the free-floating glamour and publicity, are a big part of the local economy.

A couple of days after I came home, there were frissons of excitement as Psy, the South Korean "Gangnam Style" rapper, arrived on the Riviera. Paparazzi followed him up La Croisette and took his picture drinking at the renowned Martinez hotel, other places showered him with champagne and one club is rumoured to have paid him to appear. But there was just one problem, this chap in the quirky round glasses and natty suits wasn't really Psy, but a lookalike.

I might have been more surprised by the Psy scam, but in a place where a nightly bar bill could set you back the same as a house elsewhere in the country, it seems more believable. Just as some of the festival's films like to push the line between appearance and reality, it's becoming ever more blurred off screen too.